Canada’s 2021 budget includes $50m for live music
The Canadian government has reserved up to C$50 million (US$40m) in the newly announced budget to help the live music sector weather the pandemic during 2021 and 2022.
The budget was announced yesterday (19 April) by finance minister Chrystia Freeland, who vowed to “punch our way out of the Covid recession” with $101 billion (US$81bn) in spending over three years.
The Canadian Live Music Association (CLMA) has welcomed the federal budget which it says “acknowledges our hardest hit sector” by delegating $70m to the Canada Music Fund, including the $50m earmarked specifically for live music and live music venues.
“Today, our collective voice which we all worked so hard to raise, has been heard. It is with great relief that we welcome budget 2021, which clearly recognises the integral role the Canadian live music industry plays in our quality of life – as well as its significant economic, social, and cultural benefits,” says Erin Benjamin, CLMA president and CEO.
“This support will help safeguard our nation’s critical cultural infrastructure – and the incredible artists and community”
“Our industry has been devastated as a result of Covid-19. This support will help safeguard our nation’s critical cultural infrastructure – and the incredible people, artists and community whose passion and livelihood is live music. We look forward to working with the government to ensure it reaches each and every company and organisation who needs it. With today’s historic budget, our government has helped us to believe in the future – and we can’t wait to get there, together.”
Other highlights from the budget include:
- $300m over two years, starting in 2021-22, to Canadian Heritage to establish a Recovery Fund for Heritage, Arts, Culture, Heritage and Sport Sectors.
- $200m through the regional development agencies to support major festivals.
- $200m through Canadian Heritage to support local festivals and other events.
- $49.6m over three years, starting in 2021-22, to Canadian Heritage for the Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage Program ($14 million over two years, starting in 2022-23), the Canada Arts Presentation Fund ($16 million over two years, starting in 2022-23), and the Celebration and Commemoration Program ($19.6 million over three years, starting in 2021-22).
- Canada Recovery Hiring Program, which will run from June to November and will provide $595 million to make it easier for businesses to hire back laid-off workers or hire new ones.
- Extension of Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) programs until September 2021.
Last year, the government supported the sector by allowing organisations operating in the for-profit live music industry access to a CA$20m (€13m) Covid-19 support fund.
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